I don't have a bigger age gap yet - as trying to have a second child is proving really difficult for us
... But here is my take on it...
to have a bigger age gap. There are many things I feel important that having a smaller age gap would have compromised for us. Such as breastmilk for example - you can't gurantee you will keep it during pregnancy (only something like 30% of woman do - and that also does not mean you will always keep it during all pregnancies if you kept it for one and decided to go for more children than two...) - So having a small age gap to me, where the breastmilk my first child (I feel rightly is theirs) could be compromised (causing them to wean far too early for their many needs) is not something worth risking to me. You also have to think about the common sense things... Oh no - my two year old is in a very emotional state (aka 'tantrum') and my baby is wailing and needs feeding and pottying ...who gets ignored whilst one is sorted out because there is only one of me and two very small children with very real immediate needs on my hands! (I am not saying its the end of the world or you are a bad parent if you have two children with a small age gap by the way - these are my thoughts and opinions and ideals for my
family) - But for me, this wouldn't sit right. This for me, is not a compromise I felt I would be happy with making. With an older child and a baby is very
different (and I don't need to have two of my own to know this - I currently am a nanny for various children and babies of various ages and I have loads of friends with children we spend a lot of time with - its common sense really). An older child can listen (an hear!) you more, your relationship/attachment/bond with them is pretty much established/set/good connection/etc, they have that much more understanding and patience - their needs are not as immediate as a babies needs are so asking them to 'hold a sec' whilst you meet the babies needs (and their understanding of this is good too - my DS by three knew that a babies needs must be met immediatly) is possible (in a calm harmonious way for all the family! hehe). Of course - when a child reaches this point in their life will vary. From my experience girls reach this point a bit sooner than boys. So for this reason I personally never felt comfortable with assuming where my child would be in '9 months time' - I would have regreted assuming my DS was going to change in a way that would suit me and having a new baby during the 9 months of pregnancy - and him not. I do not think it would have been fair on me to assume as it can put pressure on a child to change and perform beyond their abilities.
Your childrens personalities and how you are as a parent is what makes or breaks your childrens relationships - not how close or far apart they are in age! Do not bank on anything when it comes to the unpredictable. This is mostly because you have no idea what kind of baby you will have next. Your first may have been high needs, but your second may not be - or the other way around! And personality varies so much from family to family! I point this out because most people who want the small age gap seem to be banking on this and it is just not something you can gurantee. Your child may be good friends and they may not be. I personally am not having another child to be my first childs friend/playmate. If they get on - great! If they don't, it isn't the end of the world - my DS has plenty of his own friends. Sure, he will be (devlopmentally) in a very different world from their baby sibling - but I at least feel my life will be easier (having to deal with one baby at a time and giving that baby at the time the one on on attention the need from me) making me a better parent to my children (because its important to factor in your personality and needs as well - and be realistic about this as some people are good at stretching themselves thin and some people are not - I am not! lol), which can only help!
The only 'cons' I can think of are (the ones people usually mention when the 'age gap' threads come up!):
1). You will have to go through it all again ...that is, the 'baby' stuff - and being a 'parent' will last long - that is, you can't bank on retiring (as parents lol) at 35 with children off at Uni so you and your other half can travel the world and be 'free'. Though I personally really enjoyed this and am not in a rush to get it done and over with (and if you are already older when you had children, you don't have much choice in this anyhow) so I don't mind having to go through it all again even if I don't end up having another child until my DS is 18 and moved out of the house! lol So I do not feel this is really a con!
2). Arranging activities might be difficult. But it is not really. (assuming) there are two parents here - so there is always a parent to be there with a child if needed...like say if you take a trip to Disney Land! Little one number 2 can go on the dumbo rides with you and big number one can go on the roller coasters with Daddy - not that hard honestly. Perhaps this takes a more organised person - but I certianly have that covered (I am an OCD Virgo after all! lol) - so if you are not very organised, I suggest you work on it! hehe
Other than that - I have never heard of any other 'cons' to a bigger age gap.